Rain for Africa - Geodata for Agriculture and Water Facility

Food production heavily relies on weather conditions. To improve food yield and make efficient use of water, seeds, fertilizer and pesticides, reliable weather information is essential.

Reliable weather information

In the Rain for Africa (R4A) project, two South African and seven Dutch collaborate to make the best weather information available to various stakeholders in Africa. The project is financed through the Geodata for Agriculture and Water (G4AW) Facility, a programme by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affaires and executed by the Netherlands Space Office (NSO). The overall objective of the R4A project is to provide 125,000 small-scale farmers with reliable weather information, empowering them to improve their yields by more than 10% and lower their costs by at least 10%.

Weather observations

The Rain for Africa consortium partners combine their expertise to obtain, process and integrate the best available weather observations for South and Southern Africa. The R4A platform offers access to a wealth of weather data, for instance radar and satellite precipitation observations, historical weather records and forecasts from meteorological models. These data provide valuable information for the agricultural and energy sectors, insurance companies and meteorological services outside South Africa.

Weather data is combined with agricultural knowledge to provide location and crop-specific advice on suitable planting and spraying dates. Advice maps are available to regionally operating organisations through the AgriPortal connected to the R4A platform. Small-scale farmers have free access to site-specific agricultural advice with the AgriCloud mobile app or via USSD service.

The role of HydroNET

HydroLogic hosts the Rain for Africa platform, which is based on the HydroNET platform. Numerous sources of weather and climate data for South Africa are connected to the R4A platform. The data can be viewed and analysed on the platform, but also enables software developers to create new data products and applications for the agrifood sector. HydroLogic trains consortium partners and external developers in using the R4A platform. In addition, HydroLogic is involved in business development for the agricultural applications developed in the project.

For more information please visit www.rain4africa.org.

The Rain for Africa project is partly funded by the Geodata for Agriculture and Water (G4AW) programme. The G4AW programme is executed by the Netherlands Space Office (NSO), commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.